A polysaccharide utilization locus from an uncultured bacteroidetes phylotype suggests ecological adaptation and substrate versatility.
ABSTRACT: Recent metagenomic analyses have identified uncultured bacteria that are abundant in the rumen of herbivores and that possess putative biomass-converting enzyme systems. Here we investigate the saccharolytic capabilities of a polysaccharide utilization locus (PUL) that has been reconstructed from an uncultured Bacteroidetes phylotype (SRM-1) that dominates the rumen microbiome of Arctic reindeer. Characterization of the three PUL-encoded outer membrane glycoside hydrolases was performed using chromogenic substrates for initial screening, followed by detailed analyses of products generated from selected substrates, using high-pressure anion-exchange chromatography with electrochemical detection. Two glycoside hydrolase family 5 (GH5) endoglucanases (GH5_g and GH5_h) demonstrated activity against ?-glucans, xylans, and xyloglucan, whereas GH5_h and the third enzyme, GH26_i, were active on several mannan substrates. Synergy experiments examining different combinations of the three enzymes demonstrated limited activity enhancement on individual substrates. Binding analysis of a SusE-positioned lipoprotein revealed an affinity toward ?-glucans and, to a lesser extent, mannan, but unlike the two SusD-like lipoproteins previously characterized from the same PUL, binding to cellulose was not observed. Overall, these activities and binding specificities correlated well with the glycan content of the reindeer rumen, which was determined using comprehensive microarray polymer profiling and showed an abundance of various hemicellulose glycans. The substrate versatility of this single PUL putatively expands our perceptions regarding PUL machineries, which so far have demonstrated gene organization that suggests one cognate PUL for each substrate type. The presence of a PUL that possesses saccharolytic activity against a mixture of abundantly available polysaccharides supports the dominance of SRM-1 in the Svalbard reindeer rumen microbiome.
Project description:Uncultured and therefore uncharacterized Bacteroidetes lineages are ubiquitous in many natural ecosystems which specialize in lignocellulose degradation. However, their metabolic contribution remains mysterious, as well-studied cultured Bacteroidetes have been shown to degrade only soluble polysaccharides within the human distal gut and herbivore rumen. We have interrogated a reconstructed genome from an uncultured Bacteroidetes phylotype that dominates a switchgrass-associated community within the cow rumen. Importantly, this characterization effort has revealed the first preliminary evidence for polysaccharide utilization locus (PUL)-catalyzed conversion of cellulose. Based on these findings, we propose a further expansion of the PUL paradigm and the saccharolytic capacity of rumen Bacteroidetes species to include cellulose, the most abundant terrestrial polysaccharide on Earth. Moreover, the perspective of a cellulolytic PUL lays the foundation for PULs to be considered an alternative mechanism for cellulose degradation, next to cellulosomes and free-enzyme systems.
Project description:Lignocellulosic biomass remains a largely untapped source of renewable energy predominantly due to its recalcitrance and an incomplete understanding of how this is overcome in nature. We present here a compositional and comparative analysis of metagenomic data pertaining to a natural biomass-converting ecosystem adapted to austere arctic nutritional conditions, namely the rumen microbiome of Svalbard reindeer (Rangifer tarandus platyrhynchus). Community analysis showed that deeply-branched cellulolytic lineages affiliated to the Bacteroidetes and Firmicutes are dominant, whilst sequence binning methods facilitated the assemblage of metagenomic sequence for a dominant and novel Bacteroidales clade (SRM-1). Analysis of unassembled metagenomic sequence as well as metabolic reconstruction of SRM-1 revealed the presence of multiple polysaccharide utilization loci-like systems (PULs) as well as members of more than 20 glycoside hydrolase and other carbohydrate-active enzyme families targeting various polysaccharides including cellulose, xylan and pectin. Functional screening of cloned metagenome fragments revealed high cellulolytic activity and an abundance of PULs that are rich in endoglucanases (GH5) but devoid of other common enzymes thought to be involved in cellulose degradation. Combining these results with known and partly re-evaluated metagenomic data strongly indicates that much like the human distal gut, the digestive system of herbivores harbours high numbers of deeply branched and as-yet uncultured members of the Bacteroidetes that depend on PUL-like systems for plant biomass degradation.
Project description:We demonstrate that two characteristic Sus-like proteins encoded within a polysaccharide utilization locus (PUL) bind strongly to cellulosic substrates and interact with plant primary cell walls. This shows associations between uncultured Bacteroidetes-affiliated lineages and cellulose in the rumen and thus presents new PUL-derived targets to pursue regarding plant biomass degradation.
Project description:Marine algae convert a substantial fraction of fixed carbon dioxide into various polysaccharides. Flavobacteriia that are specialized on algal polysaccharide degradation feature genomic clusters termed polysaccharide utilization loci (PULs). As knowledge on extant PUL diversity is sparse, we sequenced the genomes of 53 North Sea Flavobacteriia and obtained 400 PULs. Bioinformatic PUL annotations suggest usage of a large array of polysaccharides, including laminarin, ?-glucans, and alginate as well as mannose-, fucose-, and xylose-rich substrates. Many of the PULs exhibit new genetic architectures and suggest substrates rarely described for marine environments. The isolates' PUL repertoires often differed considerably within genera, corroborating ecological niche-associated glycan partitioning. Polysaccharide uptake in Flavobacteriia is mediated by SusCD-like transporter complexes. Respective protein trees revealed clustering according to polysaccharide specificities predicted by PUL annotations. Using the trees, we analyzed expression of SusC/D homologs in multiyear phytoplankton bloom-associated metaproteomes and found indications for profound changes in microbial utilization of laminarin, ?-glucans, ?-mannan, and sulfated xylan. We hence suggest the suitability of SusC/D-like transporter protein expression within heterotrophic bacteria as a proxy for the temporal utilization of discrete polysaccharides.
Project description:Most enzymes that act on carbohydrates include non-catalytic carbohydrate-binding modules (CBMs) that recognize and target carbohydrates. CBMs bring their appended catalytic modules into close proximity with the target substrate and increase the hydrolytic rate of enzymes acting on insoluble substrates. We previously identified a novel CBM (CBMC5614-1) at the C-terminus of endoglucanase C5614-1 from an uncultured microorganism present in buffalo rumen. In the present study, that the functional region of CBMC5614-1 involved in ligand binding was localized to 134 amino acids. Two representative homologs of CBMC5614-1, sharing the same ligand binding profile, targeted a range of ?-linked polysaccharides that adopt very different conformations. Targeted substrates included soluble and insoluble cellulose, ?-1,3/1,4-mixed linked glucans, xylan, and mannan. Mutagenesis revealed that three conserved aromatic residues (Trp-380, Tyr-411, and Trp-423) play an important role in ligand recognition and targeting. These results suggest that CBMC5614-1 and its homologs form a novel CBM family (CBM72) with a broad ligand-binding specificity. CBM72 members can provide new insight into CBM-ligand interactions and may have potential in protein engineering and biocatalysis.
Project description:A recently identified polysaccharide utilization locus (PUL) from Bacteroides ovatus ATCC 8483 is transcriptionally up-regulated during growth on galacto- and glucomannans. It encodes two glycoside hydrolase family 26 (GH26) ?-mannanases, BoMan26A and BoMan26B, and a GH36 ?-galactosidase, BoGal36A. The PUL also includes two glycan-binding proteins, confirmed by ?-mannan affinity electrophoresis. When this PUL was deleted, B. ovatus was no longer able to grow on locust bean galactomannan. BoMan26A primarily formed mannobiose from mannan polysaccharides. BoMan26B had higher activity on galactomannan with a high degree of galactosyl substitution and was shown to be endo-acting generating a more diverse mixture of oligosaccharides, including mannobiose. Of the two ?-mannanases, only BoMan26B hydrolyzed galactoglucomannan. A crystal structure of BoMan26A revealed a similar structure to the exo-mannobiohydrolase CjMan26C from Cellvibrio japonicus, with a conserved glycone region (-1 and -2 subsites), including a conserved loop closing the active site beyond subsite -2. Analysis of cellular location by immunolabeling and fluorescence microscopy suggests that BoMan26B is surface-exposed and associated with the outer membrane, although BoMan26A and BoGal36A are likely periplasmic. In light of the cellular location and the biochemical properties of the two characterized ?-mannanases, we propose a scheme of sequential action by the glycoside hydrolases encoded by the ?-mannan PUL and involved in the ?-mannan utilization pathway in B. ovatus. The outer membrane-associated BoMan26B initially acts on the polysaccharide galactomannan, producing comparably large oligosaccharide fragments. Galactomanno-oligosaccharides are further processed in the periplasm, degalactosylated by BoGal36A, and subsequently hydrolyzed into mainly mannobiose by the ?-mannanase BoMan26A.
Project description:The ecology of the uncultured, but large and morphologically conspicuous, rumen bacterium Oscillospira spp. was studied. Oscillospira-specific 16S rRNA gene sequences were detected in North American domestic cattle, sheep from Australia and Japan, and Norwegian reindeer. Phylogenetic analysis of the sequences obtained allowed definition of three operational taxonomic units within the Oscillospira clade. Consistent with this genetic diversity, we observed atypical smaller morphotypes by using an Oscillospira-specific fluorescence in situ hybridization probe. Despite the visual disappearance of typical large Oscillospira morphotypes, the presence of Oscillospira spp. was still detected by Oscillospira-specific PCR in the rumen of cattle and sheep. These observations suggest the broad presence of Oscillospira species in various rumen ecosystems with the level, and most likely the morphological form, dependent on diet. An ecological analysis based on enumeration of the morphologically conspicuous, large-septate form confirms that the highest counts are associated with the feeding of fresh forage diets to cattle and sheep and in two different subspecies of reindeer investigated.
Project description:The human gut microbiota (HGM) has far-reaching impacts on human health and nutrition, which are fueled primarily by the metabolism of otherwise indigestible complex carbohydrates commonly known as dietary fiber. However, the molecular basis of the ability of individual taxa of the HGM to address specific dietary glycan structures remains largely unclear. In particular, the utilization of ?(1,3)-glucans, which are widespread in the human diet as yeast, seaweed, and plant cell walls, had not previously been resolved. Through a systems-based approach, here we show that the symbiont Bacteroides uniformis deploys a single, exemplar polysaccharide utilization locus (PUL) to access yeast ?(1,3)-glucan, brown seaweed ?(1,3)-glucan (laminarin), and cereal mixed-linkage ?(1,3)/?(1,4)-glucan. Combined biochemical, enzymatic, and structural analysis of PUL-encoded glycoside hydrolases (GHs) and surface glycan-binding proteins (SGBPs) illuminates a concerted molecular system by which B. uniformis recognizes and saccharifies these distinct ?-glucans. Strikingly, the functional characterization of homologous ?(1,3)-glucan utilization loci (1,3GUL) in other Bacteroides further demonstrated that the ability of individual taxa to utilize ?(1,3)-glucan variants and/or ?(1,3)/?(1,4)-glucans arises combinatorially from the individual specificities of SGBPs and GHs at the cell surface, which feed corresponding signals to periplasmic hybrid two-component sensors (HTCSs) via TonB-dependent transporters (TBDTs). These data reveal the importance of cooperativity in the adaptive evolution of GH and SGBP cohorts to address individual polysaccharide structures. We anticipate that this fine-grained knowledge of PUL function will inform metabolic network analysis and proactive manipulation of the HGM. Indeed, a survey of 2,441 public human metagenomes revealed the international, yet individual-specific, distribution of each 1,3GUL.IMPORTANCE Bacteroidetes are a dominant phylum of the human gut microbiota (HGM) that target otherwise indigestible dietary fiber with an arsenal of polysaccharide utilization loci (PULs), each of which is dedicated to the utilization of a specific complex carbohydrate. Here, we provide novel insight into this paradigm through functional characterization of homologous PULs from three autochthonous Bacteroides species, which target the family of dietary ?(1,3)-glucans. Through detailed biochemical and protein structural analysis, we observed an unexpected diversity in the substrate specificity of PUL glycosidases and glycan-binding proteins with regard to ?(1,3)-glucan linkage and branching patterns. In combination, these individual enzyme and protein specificities support taxon-specific growth on individual ?(1,3)-glucans. This detailed metabolic insight, together with a comprehensive survey of individual 1,3GULs across human populations, further expands the fundamental roadmap of the HGM, with potential application to the future development of microbial intervention therapies.
Project description:Proteiniphilum saccharofermentans str. M3/6T is a recently described species within the family Porphyromonadaceae (phylum Bacteroidetes), which was isolated from a mesophilic laboratory-scale biogas reactor. The genome of the strain was completely sequenced and manually annotated to reconstruct its metabolic potential regarding biomass degradation and fermentation pathways. The P. saccharofermentans str. M3/6T genome consists of a 4,414,963?bp chromosome featuring an average GC-content of 43.63%. Genome analyses revealed that the strain possesses 3396 protein-coding sequences. Among them are 158 genes assigned to the carbohydrate-active-enzyme families as defined by the CAZy database, including 116 genes encoding glycosyl hydrolases (GHs) involved in pectin, arabinogalactan, hemicellulose (arabinan, xylan, mannan, ?-glucans), starch, fructan and chitin degradation. The strain also features several transporter genes, some of which are located in polysaccharide utilization loci (PUL). PUL gene products are involved in glycan binding, transport and utilization at the cell surface. In the genome of strain M3/6T, 64 PUL are present and most of them in association with genes encoding carbohydrate-active enzymes. Accordingly, the strain was predicted to metabolize several sugars yielding carbon dioxide, hydrogen, acetate, formate, propionate and isovalerate as end-products of the fermentation process. Moreover, P. saccharofermentans str. M3/6T encodes extracellular and intracellular proteases and transporters predicted to be involved in protein and oligopeptide degradation. Comparative analyses between P. saccharofermentans str. M3/6T and its closest described relative P. acetatigenes str. DSM 18083T indicate that both strains share a similar metabolism regarding decomposition of complex carbohydrates and fermentation of sugars.
Project description:Previous gene-centric analysis of a cow rumen metagenome revealed the first potentially cellulolytic polysaccharide utilization locus, of which the main catalytic enzyme (AC2aCel5A) was identified as a glycoside hydrolase (GH) family 5 endo-cellulase. Here we present the 1.8 Å three-dimensional structure of AC2aCel5A, and characterization of its enzymatic activities. The enzyme possesses the archetypical (?/?)8-barrel found throughout the GH5 family, and contains the two strictly conserved catalytic glutamates located at the C-terminal ends of ?-strands 4 and 7. The enzyme is active on insoluble cellulose and acts exclusively on linear ?-(1,4)-linked glucans. Co-crystallization of a catalytically inactive mutant with substrate yielded a 2.4 Å structure showing cellotriose bound in the -3 to -1 subsites. Additional electron density was observed between Trp178 and Trp254, two residues that form a hydrophobic "clamp", potentially interacting with sugars at the +1 and +2 subsites. The enzyme's active-site cleft was narrower compared to the closest structural relatives, which in contrast to AC2aCel5A, are also active on xylans, mannans and/or xyloglucans. Interestingly, the structure and function of this enzyme seem adapted to less-substituted substrates such as cellulose, presumably due to the insufficient space to accommodate the side-chains of branched glucans in the active-site cleft.